This year marks the beginning of the mobile and digital revolution in the fitness industry. Many clubs will combine great customer service and member engagement with cutting edge technology to drive revenue and enhance the club experience.
As club owners and managers, you’re faced with far too many challenges during the day like staff not showing up, broken machines and trying to increase membership. Adding technology to the mix seems like just another thing to worry about. However, when harnessed the right way, technology can be an advantage for a club operator. Here’s how . . .
It begins with smartphones. Nearly 80% of online Americans have a mobile phone that connects to the Internet. Cell phones have connected millions of people to a host of entertaining apps, devices and services that were never available before. With the vast majority of club members using smartphones, how can health clubs take advantage of not only creating a better member experience, but engaging them and up-sale products and services?
From training videos, to virtual coaching, to online advertisements, clubs are now engaging with members where they live (online) and on their mobile devices. Members now have a growing need to access basic club services such as a class schedule, or enhanced club services like signing up for PT from their phones.
For health clubs, the mobile revolution has profit potential because many people are purchasing products and services directly from their smartphones. 1 out of every 4 club members have made purchases from their phones. Imagine if grabbing a protein shake or even a personal training session was as quick as a phone tap.
In 2014, people spent $700M purchasing wearable devices, and now 1 out of every 5 Americans are using wearable tech every day. These devices such as FitBit, Nike+, Jawbone UP and Apple Watch are giving members access to valuable information that helps them understand how they are progressing towards their fitness goals. Savvy clubs can use these devices to support their members’ fitness programs and offer better opportunities for engagement, such as club fitness challenges for example.
Through combining ASF’s application programming interface (API) with Netpulse, this new app is the first of its kind to be native in the fitness industry and not have to operate through a web-enhanced method. With its software’s online scheduler, club members can now view by day, week, month, activity or instructor and schedule PT sessions, or classes such as Zumba, Spin, etc. Members can also purchase new PT sessions, or view previous PT balances. Members can add themselves to a class or PT waiting list and then synchronize to their phone calendar. Additionally, members can check into the club using the mobile app barcode. Clubs can also send push notifications offering referral rewards, fitness challenges, workout tracking and PT promotions.
Stephen Wilson is the marketing manager at ASF Payment Solutions and a 20-year veteran of marketing and advertising. His focus on branding and strategic communications in the health and wellness industry for over 20 years has earned him numerous accreditations and awards on national marketing and advertising campaigns. For more information, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit http://www.asfpaymentsolutions.com to learn more about products and services.